There is only one thing to say about The Boys, that is the best TV series of recent times! In celebrating the date of its first release, in original distribution on Amazon Prime from July 26, 2019, we will talk about the reasons for the success, the comics on which the series is based and our total devotion from the very first scene!
Development and contents of The Boys
The Boys is an American superhero television series based on the comic book of the same name by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson. The series was developed by Eric Kripke. Seasons 1-2 and 3 are available, while a fourth is currently in preparation.
The Boys takes place in an alternative universe where superheroes live in contact with the public and work for a company, Vought International, which deals with their promotion and marketing. Far from their heroic appearance, most of them have personality problems, are full of vices and sometimes even dangerous. The series focuses on two groups: the Seven, Vought’s first team of superheroes, and the Boys, a sort of vigilante trying to take down Vought and their corrupt superheroes. The Boys are led by Billy Butcher, who despises all superheroes while the Seven are led by Homelander, the psychopathic, narcissistic and violent (but also devilishly funny) version of Captain America.
At the beginning of the series, a boy, Hughie Campbell is hugging his girlfriend. A member of the Seven named A-Train running at the speed of light practically “dismembers” Hughie’s girlfriend, leaving only the young woman’s arms hanging around his neck. Imagine the face of whoever watched this scene… more than the face imagine the dropped jaw! And incredulous eyes! Obviously, from that moment the attention remained high, and it was not disappointed!
Meanwhile, the Seven are joined by Annie January (superhero name Starlight), a young girl full of hope but also naivety and who will have to face the terrible truth about those she so admires.
I would like to tell you the rest of the plot but … really … watch the series, you will see strange family ties, new superheroes, the Nazis and “super” love practices!
Who are The Boys and The Seven?
The other members of the Seven, besides Homelander and Starlight, are the disillusioned Queen Maeve (a queer Wonder Woman), the world’s fastest drug addict A-Train, the fishman The Deep (in the original The Deep), the invisible Translucent and the mysterious Black Noir. In Season 2, Supremacist Stormfront will join the group and become a central character. In the third one you will find Soldier Boy who will create some good mess! And he is played by Jensen Ackles, best known for his role as Dean Winchester in the television series Supernatural!
The Boys, on the other hand, are led, as we have said, by Billy Butcher. Butcher hates the Seven, they made him lose his wife, and has an enormous thirst for revenge. He is a very charismatic character. Hughie joins him because, like Butcher, a superhero has stolen the love of his life from him. Hughie is a perfectly normal guy, sometimes awkward, but he will prove to be resourceful.
The Boys are completed by the tactician Mother’s Milk, by the weapons specialist Serge known as Frenchie and Kimiko, a girl who has been injected against her will with the mysterious “Compound V”, the source of superpowers.
Despite being a superhero themed series, which would suggest a dose of superficiality, in reality both The Seven and The Boys are extremely characterized in their strengths and weaknesses, which makes you love this series even more.
Where does The Boys come from?
As we said at the beginning of this article, The Boys is taken from the homonymous comics series by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson.
The first episodes are drawn by Darick Robertson, who then alternates with other artists, while he signs all the covers.
The rights of the series belong to its creators. Released in the US by Dynamite Entertainment, it was originally edited by Wildstorm, who canceled it after just six issues. Garth Ennis later explains that the DC Comics, Wildstorm’s parent company was embarrassed by the general tone of the series, very violent and with explicit sexual references.
During the publishing history with Dynamite Entertainment, The Boys continued to be published successfully. Ennis, in retrospect, said the change of publisher was positive for the series, which had benefitted from greater creative freedom with an independent label.
Thought from the beginning as a limited series, The Boys ended in November 2012 after 72 episodes, at the end of the scenario planned by Garth Ennis. The series was released in the United States in comic format and then reissued in Trade paperbacks (collections of episodes in albums). In Italy, but also in France, the comic series is published by Panini.
Besides the TV series based on the comic, in June 2020 the first part of The Boys: Dear Becky Collection appeared, an eight-part miniseries, which marks the return of comics with Garth Ennis at the screenplay and Russ Braun at the drawing.
In addition, an animated spin-off series, The Boys Presents: Diabolical, has been on air since 2022, also on Amazon Prime.
Why we love The Boys
Erik Kripke, showrunner of the tv series, said:
It’s a series that works for those who love and those who hate superhero stuff.
In fact the superheroes, The Seven, are like the Greek gods, terribly human in their vices and in their virtues, which allows a great empathy and therefore, at the same time, to love and hate, exactly as humans do with each other and with themselves! Kripke continues:
It offers all the fun of the genre, but is also very critical of it and deconstructs it. It is an exact reflection of the world we live in right now. I think people find it surprisingly current and probably smarter than they thought when they started watching it.
We think that’s exactly why we watch The Boys, along with a black sense of humor, crazy twists and incredible acting from its cast.
First of all, Homelander. He is the best villain ever, give this man a prize!